We had the good fortune of connecting with Dr. Jazmine Highsmith and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dr. Jazmine, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
The most important factor behind my success is my work ethic. I’m not a stranger to hard work, and I don’t mind putting my head down and doing the work. People think that they can reach success overnight and it’s a process and that process requires hard work and people don’t want to work hard. They want shortcuts and they want handouts but I don’t mind getting dirty in order to accomplish a goal. I’ve always been told that there is no shortcut to the top, while the road is long the reward is greater.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’ve recently realized that as a professional I prefer not to be put in a box. I do many things and I excel in many things and my work ranges. By day I am an HR professional and that entails handling many HR functions for a large nonprofit here in Houston, Texas. I’ve been in HR for 7 years starting out as an assistant since then I’ve held many HR positions and my current position allows me to oversee a team of HR Business Partners and then provide HR Support to our corporate staff. Once I am done with my HR duties I am an advocate for female athletes and a tool for athletes looking to transition into life post sports. With my work through my organization Female Athletes Rock, I have the pleasure of featuring and interviewing current and former female athletes in addition to blogging about topics that female athletes at every level can relate to. I think purpose has gotten me to where I am professional because as I became more aware of who I am and the impact I want to leave I’m pushed further into my purpose. It hasn’t been easy but as I grow as a person I know that nothing great comes easy and we must experience difficulties to appreciate the joruney. I’ve learned that prayer is key and that failure doesn’t mean “the end.” I want people to know that anything is possible for people that put in the work, you don’t have to be the smartest, the most talented, or the best but you have to work hard.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love Houston because it has so many great places to visit and things to do! Favorite Brunch Spot: Tony Mandola’s in Montrose my favorite place to go after church on Sundays…unlimited mimosas! Favorite Restaurant: Neyow’s Creole Cafe: They have a restaurant in New Orleans and we loved it when we visited. Since opening in Houston my finace and I visit at least monthly, the chargrilled oysters are my favorite. Erma Rose Winery in Katy, Tx: It’s a family-owned & black-owned winery in Katy and they have great music & artists weekly, a great selection of wines, and amazing food trucks on site. Feast With Beast: The Gym I go to is amazing and when my friends visit I make sure we work out and I take them to the gym I’m a member of. They have workouts for everybody at every level and it’s the best place to be; the coaches, the atmosphere, and the other members are amazing. The Musuem District: I am a fan of museums so I love to visit the museums we have here.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My mother & father Marthenia & Keith Mapps have instilled in me at a very young age the importance of being true to myself and being a leader. I think that a lot of what I have accomplished is because of their push when I thought things got hard. They always encouraged me to be better and do better. My high school coach Carmen Jackson of Miami Northwestern Senior High School pulled me out of the hallway and told me she wanted me to be apart of her track team. At 14 I thought she was insane but she saw something in me that I didn’t see in myself and I’m thankful that she did. Her words that were given to me over 15+ years ago still resonate with me in my 30s and have fueled my desire to accomplish many things. My high school throws coach Richard Luis, in his first year coaching me he told me that I was going to be a great thrower and I don’t know if I believed him or not at the time but I do remember just buying into his process and ultimately doing things I didn’t think I could do. He believed in me and encouraged me and even when I went off to college and I was struggling in my events he still coached and provided words of encouragement for me. My village deserves a shoutout they consist of my aunts, uncles, godparents, close family & friends, sorority sisters these people play a vital part in my success because they constantly uplift and support my work. Finally my fiance JoRhon Calhoun, he believes in and supports my dreams and is the epitome of an amazing partner.
Linkedin: Dr. Jazmine Highsmith
Facebook: Female Athletes Rock
Shakayla Marshall Courtney Dennis Kelley King Sr.